Grand Prix

Stephen Dean

6 March 2006

Video. 7′ 30’’

Stephen Dean’s video Grand Prix was filmed in the United States, at a “demolition derby”, one of those events based on crash culture which consists of battering other cars until the last vehicle is still running. Power, premeditated chaos and crashes are the essence of the competition. As has been rightly pointed out, Stephen Dean formulates this work as a sculpture in destruction. In Grand Prix we can see the other face or the negative portrait of a number of commonly accepted conventions, including those defining the very nature of motorsports themselves. However, it would be probably more appropriate to see in this “ceremony” the unlimited deployment of a number of drives inherent to the very nature or condition of the car, particularly those associated with the feeling of power and supremacy. Paraphrasing Ballard, we could intuit that technology, and rituals such as this one, provide us with excellent tools to explore our own psychopathology.